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Who are the real separatists in this independence debate?

‘Bairns not bombs” was how the SNP MSP Mark McDonald summed up the independence White Paper in yesterday’s Holyrood debate. Why not bairns now? asked Labour’s Iain Gray, insisting that the Nationalists could introduce their free child-care policy tomorrow – well, if they could squeeze an extra £700 million out of the Barnett Formula. Article … Continue reading

The scare stories are bogus…but should have been challenged

WHO could have predicted that it would be left to the governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, to ride to the rescue of the Scottish Government last week over the Independence White Paper, after its lambasting from the Scottish and UK press? The governor calmly said he would welcome discussions about Scotland remaining … Continue reading

Economic recovery – but where’s the money going?

We have achieved lift-off, according to Mark Carney, the governor of the Bank of England in its most optimistic forecast for six years. Those struggling with debts, falling earnings and zero-hours contracts may not see much to celebrate. But Messrs Cameron and Osborne are confident the economy is riding to their electoral rescue. And on … Continue reading

Dangerous Games at Govan and Grangemouth

I’m not sure that last week’s First Ministers Question Time did a lot to reassure Scots the nation is in sound hands. Labour’s Johann Lamont and Nicola Sturgeon, standing in for Alex Salmond who was in China, turned the indignation meter up to 11 in a finger-jabbing confrontation my granny would have called a stair-heid … Continue reading

Fight for Clyde yards showed how we really are in it together

We’re not gonners”, cried the Govan union convenor, Jamie Webster, yesterday, relieved that “only” 800 shipyard jobs are to go in Scotland. The unions have shown a defiant realism in the face of adversity thathas not always been evident in Scottish industry recently. The Clyde has been written off so often that you forget it … Continue reading

Independence – just don’t go there!

One paper it was a dismal week for the Yes Campaign. The respected Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) produced a report saying that, even with North Sea oil revenues, there would be a £2 billion shortfall in public spending if the Barnett Formula were scrapped and taxes might have to rise by 14%. The Centre … Continue reading

Rip-off Britain and the scandal of pension fund charges

At last – a reason to praise the Coalition. The UK Government has finally moved to curb the worst mis-selling scandal in the history of British finance, greater than endowment mortgages, PPI, energy profiteering or even sub-prime mortgages. I refer to the legalised theft of billions of pounds from citizens’ pension funds through excessive charges, … Continue reading

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